The Writers Voice
The World's Favourite Literary Website



Jolanta Gradowicz

Every time Alice entered the hospital, she felt nauseous. She couldn’t stand the odor, so characteristic of all hospitals. Besides, it was very difficult for her to look at the hospital beds with white bedclothes and faded blankets, and at the women and men with death sentences written on their faces. It was amazing how much they all were alike…

She got in the lift, and dreamed to be back on the noisy street before the building as soon as possible.

The fourth floor… The office of the head of the hospital ward… She knocked at the door and walked into the room.

“My name is Alice Adams. I’d like to receive information about my father’s current state.”

“Well, you have surely noticed that your father is very weak these days,” the doctor said almost routinely. “The chemotherapy we applied didn’t work. Now we are giving him only analgesics not to allow him to be in pain. I’m sorry, but it is agony…”

Alice thought that she was prepared to hear such words. She had been taking care of her father for the last six months. She could see how the terminal disease weakened him day after day.

She recalled that day when he had come to her after a long-term break. He seemed lonely and helpless in the face of the illness.

The unexpected return surprised her. After he had begun a new relationship with a new woman, he had stopped calling her and hadn’t felt any need to see her and her children.

Yet, he had chosen just her, his daughter, when he had to ask for help. To tell the truth, he even hadn’t asked her – it was unexpressed at least. Perhaps he had thought that it was her clear duty to look after him – her sick father.

Alice had received him as if there had been no long separation between them. They had been like a family for the several moths again, but she couldn’t still get rid of the sorrow and regret in her heart – the past recollections were too painful…

Alice needed some time to calm down herself on the hospital corridor – her father shouldn’t see her in this state. Both patients and visitors on the corridor took no notice of her. Such a sight, when someone is crying, was nothing special on corridors of the hospital ward…

She entered the room where her father lay. He was sleeping, so she sat down on a stool, close to his bed. She tried to think of some unimportant things not to burst into tears.

After some time the man opened his eyes slowly and looked at his daughter.

“Alice, my child…” His voice was barely audible. “I couldn’t accept the truth until now. But I feel the death is coming. This is the end, Alice. And don’t deny it. I wasn’t a good father or a good grandpa, I know. If only I had some time to fix everything… If only I could put back the time…” He fell asleep again.

Alice couldn’t hold back her tears. Her heart cried desperately. “It’s too late, father. You won’t fix anything any more. You can’t put back the time to see me as your little daughter or to see your grandchildren growing up. It’s too late…”

She was sobbing quietly. And she felt sorry for his father and for herself. Her sorrow and regret mixed with the thought that fate was unfair to her… to both of them…

Critique this work

Click on the book to leave a comment about this work

All Authors (hi-speed)    All Authors (dialup)    Children    Columnists    Contact    Drama    Fiction    Grammar    Guest Book    Home    Humour    Links    Narratives    Novels    Poems    Published Authors    Reviews    September 11    Short Stories    Teen Writings    Submission Guidelines

Be sure to have a look at our Discussion Forum today to see what's
happening on The World's Favourite Literary Website.